On Wednesday, 26 October, a delegation of Samidoun Netherlands went to Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, delivering a message to the Military Police protesting the detention and deportation of Khaled Barakat and Charlotte Kates from the EU as they arrived to attend the March for Return and Liberation in Brussels.
Members of Samidoun Netherlands carried placards, Palestinian flags and signs in solidarity with Palestine and denouncing the refusal of entry to Barakat and Kates. They emphasized that repressive tactics would not hinder or suppress the Palestinian cause, noting that this delegation came as members and supporters of Samidoun Netherlands and the Palestine solidarity movement were planning to go to Brussels on Saturday for the demonstration.
“It is completely unacceptable that Khaled Barakat and Charlotte Kates were denied entry to the EU by the Netherlands for political reasons and subsequently deported,” Thomas Hofland, Samidoun Netherlands coordinator.
Khaled Barakat, a Palestinian native of Jerusalem, is one of the co-founders of the Masar Badil – the Palestinian Alternative Revolutionary Path Movement. Charlotte Kates is the international coordinator of Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.
Charlotte Kates said, “The European Union always talks about human rights, but ignores them when it comes to Palestine. Palestine activists in all EU countries face repression. This deportation is therefore not just an attack on Khaled and me, but on the Palestinian movement as a whole.”
“It is ironic that the Netherlands, a co-founder of the European Union, is deporting Charlotte and me as we embark on a week of activities and protests against European complicity in the Zionist colonization of Palestine and the murder of our Palestinian people,” said Khaled Barakat.
Barakat and Kates, who are married, were on their way from Canada to Brussels to take part in the Week of Return and Liberation of Palestine, a week of activities and protests for the Palestinian cause, which concludes on Saturday, October 29 with a big demonstration at the European Parliament in Brussels.